In this vignette, teachers demonstrate how they share ideas about the teaching and learning of spelling knowledge, understanding and skills across the years of schooling. They discuss and demonstrate aspects of explicit teaching and differentiation in the teaching and learning of spelling. In each case, sorting words is used as a versatile and effective learning activity to develop and consolidate spelling knowledge.
The year 3 teacher uses a word sorting activity to provide the scaffolding necessary for students to practise, synthesise and consolidate learning about sound–letter relationships within consonant blends.
The year 7 teacher connects to prior knowledge and skills when beginning a teaching and learning sequence and establishes and maintains a clear statement of the learning goals and expectations for each lesson. The students sort and match words using their knowledge of prefixes and base words.
The year 8 teacher takes the earlier advice of her colleagues and makes deliberate and explicit reference to a display of words sorted as part of a previous spelling lesson to provide the scaffolding necessary for a student to practise, synthesise and consolidate learned knowledge about nominalisation in order to spell accurately.
The TeachingACEnglish project was developed by the Department of Education, Training and Employment, Queensland in collaboration with Education Services Australia.
This vignette was filmed at Caravonica State School and Gordonvale State High School, Queensland.
In the Australian Curriculum: English, the content descriptions about spelling knowledge, understanding and skills from Foundation to year 10 appear in the Language strand in the sub-strand of Expressing and developing ideas. They progress from an early focus on sound–letter knowledge, spelling rules and knowledge of irregular spelling to applying spelling knowledge, such as etymological knowledge, to spell unusual and technical words.
Spelling knowledges include graphophonic, morphemic, visual and etymological knowledge. Development of knowledge and evidence of understanding and skills about spelling knowledge is cumulative across the curriculum from Foundation, where students learn about using onset and rime to spell words, to the secondary years, where students use knowledge about word origins and nominalisation to spell words.
Based on Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA) materials.
Understand how to use sound–letter relationships and knowledge of spelling rules, compound words, prefixes, suffixes, morphemes and less common letter combinations, for example ‘tion’ (ACELA1485)
Understand how to use spelling rules and word origins, for example Greek and Latin roots, base words, suffixes, prefixes, spelling patterns and generalisations to learn new words and how to spell them (ACELA1539)
Understand how to apply learned knowledge consistently in order to spell accurately and to learn new words including nominalisations (ACELA1549)
Source: Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority (ACARA). Icon of book
Please note: this resource does not address all focus areas of these standards.
This publication is funded by the Australian Government Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations.